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Guy Behind the Guy: Soak it In

Sunday, 04.26.2009 / 12:01 PM ET / Tracking the Storm
By Mike Sundheim
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Guy Behind the Guy: Soak it In
Mike Sundheim
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If our two-year absence from the Stanley Cup playoffs taught me nothing else, I learned to enjoy every moment. I enjoy the every-day interactions between teammates and the sudden increase in crowd noise on a scoring chance. I store in my memory bank the sounds of fans at the airport at 1 a.m. and the buzz of the media in the locker room after a morning skate. In a series entirely too close for predictions, the only things I know for sure about today is that fans will start arriving in our parking lots when they open at 2:30 p.m., and that this building will be jam-packed and roaring when the puck drops at 7:30. Those facts alone are enough to make my arm hairs stand on end, let alone the possibility that we may witness something like what we saw at the end of Game 4 here.

So soak those moments in. Watch the cars with flags flying roll into the lots. Smell the barbecue cooking in the lots. Cheer a little kid doing his best Cam Ward impression in a street hockey game. I know I'll be out there at some point tonight, as Kyle and I make our pre-game rounds outside before every playoff game. I'll meet some friends, grab a brat and watch some people play cornhole. And then we'll wind our way back inside, through a maze of blaring stereos and tailgating chairs.

In the RBC Center, the crowd will cheer when warmups begin, and build to a crescendo as Steve Smith cranks the Hurricane Warning siren to welcome the Canes to the ice for the game. By the time Pete Soto's crew plays a certain song by Stryper right before the puck drop, a nationwide audience will be seeing the special atmosphere we enjoy this time of year around here.

We don't know whether we will still doing this in June or not, but we may as well enjoy every second of it along the way.

Media Alert: Along this same theme, the Star-Ledger in New Jersey included an article today about the development of our hockey market, with a special emphasis on the tailgating atmosphere.


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STANDINGS

EASTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 WSH 51 38 9 4 166 114 80
2 FLA 52 31 15 6 143 115 68
3 NYR 52 29 18 5 148 134 63
4 TBL 51 29 18 4 137 118 62
5 BOS 52 28 18 6 151 137 62
6 NYI 51 27 18 6 143 127 60
7 DET 52 26 18 8 130 131 60
8 PIT 51 26 18 7 132 130 59
9 NJD 53 26 20 7 119 120 59
10 CAR 54 24 21 9 130 142 57
11 MTL 54 26 24 4 143 143 56
12 PHI 51 23 19 9 121 133 55
13 OTT 53 24 23 6 148 165 54
14 BUF 53 21 26 6 120 139 48
15 TOR 51 19 23 9 117 140 47
16 CBJ 54 21 28 5 135 168 47

STATS

2015-2016 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
J. Faulk 54 15 19 -13 34
J. Skinner 54 19 12 -3 31
V. Rask 52 12 19 0 31
J. Staal 54 12 19 8 31
K. Versteeg 53 10 21 1 31
E. Staal 54 9 21 0 30
E. Lindholm 54 8 16 -9 24
A. Nestrasil 47 7 12 0 19
J. Nordstrom 43 5 9 2 14
R. Hainsey 54 3 11 -11 14
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
C. Ward 15 11 6 .908 2.38
E. Lack 9 10 3 .901 2.74
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